I think that sometimes, culture is a big reason that we act the way we act and think the way we think. Sometimes, we are so blind to our culture, and it is so engrained into who we are, that we don’t even notice. That being said, I don’t think that our culture is always right in how it does influence us.
I asked my husband a question the other day and thought, “Wow, my husband would never ask me that. Why am I asking him, and neither one of us even blinked?” Even the mere thought of him asking me the question, made me laugh! What does this phenomenon mean about how we think and view our worth as women? As you read through these questions, envision your husband saying to you…
- Will you still find me attractive if I get stretch marks?
- Do I look fat in this outfit?
- Do you think I can be a parent and pursue a career?
- I am getting greys. What color should I dye my hair?
- Can you watch the kids while I run out?
- Should I get BOTOX for my wrinkles?
- Will you clean the toilets?
- Can we afford for me to go to school also?
- I am wondering how having another child will impact my job?
- Will you still desire me when I don’t look 25 anymore?
- I’m writing a menu for the week. Any requests?
- Hey I am setting up the kids’ dentist appointments for next month.
Now, maybe you laughed, maybe you didn’t, seeing in your mind your husband so worried about his physical appearance, but ask yourself, are these things I worry about as a wife? Are these things I have asked my husband? If so, why? How come when my husband gets fat and goes grey, there aren’t worries or even a conversation about it? If you are a male reading this, perhaps you are thinking, “I hate when my wife asks me those things. I don’t even think about those things unless she’s asking.” or “Wow, it doesn’t even register as wrong when she asks me those things. Maybe it’s engrained in me too.”
Whatever your reaction to this article, I hope you used it as an opportunity to evaluate how you value yourself and your partner. Take your thoughts from this and have a good conversation with one another about where you would like to make changes in the relationship, and where you feel like you are doing well.
Kathleen Baxter MS, LMFT